The Hult Prize Foundation recently announced that Lagos Business School has advanced to the regional finals of the 5th annual Hult Prize. The Hult Prize is the world’s largest student competition and start-up platform for social good. In partnership with President Bill Clinton and the Clinton Global Initiative, the innovative crowdsourcing platform identifies and launches disruptive and catalytic social ventures that aim to solve the planet’s most pressing challenges. Student teams compete in six cities around the world for a chance to secure $1 million in start-up funding to launch a sustainable social venture.
The team members representing Lagos Business School are full time MBA students. The team consists of: Adebayo Alonge, Enoor Erhirhie, Kanyinsola Adedinsewo, Oluwatosin Adegun and Ahudiya Osiri. These young minds have identified that critical limitations to good healthcare for many Nigerian slum dwellers arise as a result of limited availability of health facilities, long wait periods, poor medical care and expensive medicines. These limitations affect the possibilities for diagnosis and reduce the quality of treatment and care. The non-existence of universal health insurance and high out of pocket medical expenses makes healthcare financing the overarching constraint to provision of high quality healthcare for Nigeria’s slum dwellers and has made it difficult for private sector health providers to develop sustainable business solutions for slum communities. They believe their integrated solution which addresses limitations to early screening, leverages on high mobile telephone penetration of over 70%, utilises user participation while ensuring individual need customisation will ensure low cost management of non communicable diseases such as hypertension and asthma that are set to constitute the major disease burden as a result of the lifestyle in local slum communities. The team is positive that the solution they have to share at the Hult prize challenge is sufficiently capable of being adapted all over Africa with the benefit of reducing cost of management of non communicable diseases and improving health outcomes globally.
The 2014 Hult Prize will focus on the 250 million slum dwellers around the world, suffering from chronic diseases, who need help – a challenge personally selected by President Bill Clinton. Ahmad Ashkar, CEO and Founder of the Hult Prize, attributes the success of the competition to the shift in the global economy and the millennial generation’s refusal to live in a world with inequality, “We are giving entrepreneurs from around the world a platform to innovate and revolutionise the way we think about servicing the poor.”
Each team selected was chosen from more than 10,000 applications received from over 350 colleges and universities in over 150 countries. The Hult Prize regional competitions will take place on March 7 and 8, 2014 in Boston, San Francisco, London, Dubai, Shanghai and Sao Paulo. Lagos Business School will compete in the city of London.